Diary of a Sabra“Diary of a Sabra: Faith In Action”  by Judge Eve is a downloadable e-book which is available for $9.95.

Sample  from the book:

Chapter 2:
The Before: Where Do I Come From?
Jerusalem, The Holiest City in the World

I was born in Jerusalem, Israel, on July 22, 1940. As the oldest of three children, and the only grandchild of my father’s parents, I received a lot of love and attention from many sources. My mother’s parents lived across the hall from us so although they had many grandchildren, being so close to them, I got their attention also.

In Israel, especially at that time, many people lived in apartments. Our apartment house was very big with many neighbors. We lived on the second floor and had many dear friends on the third and fourth floors. The building was also so situated that it faced one English police station on the side where my parents’ bedroom’s balcony was. (At that time, the English occupied Israel.)

I cannot recall anything particularly eventful during the first seven years of my life other than that I was three years old when I first stated that I was going to be an attorney when I grew up. I do not know exactly why I felt that way, although now I have an idea when I see the way I have been led.

All my grandparents, and my parents for that matter, are from Poland, and were very, very religious orthodox Jews. Both grandfathers wore beards had their heads shaven at all times, and always wore skull caps or hats. They both also always studied the Torah (Hebrew for Bible) and the Talmud, which is the Jewish Law Book in effect. My grandparents also spent a great deal of time in the synagogue. My parents kept a Kosher home, which meant that we had separate dishes for meat and milk foods, and, of course, there would be no food eaten at home or elsewhere, which was not Kosher, such as bacon, pork or any of the animals prohibited in the Old Testament. We went to the synagogue regularly but only on the High Holidays.

It could be that I was exposed to the law because of my grandfathers’ studying the subject so extensively. It could also be that the first school I went to, which was a private school where English was taught, with prayer and Bible study being emphasized, as well as the study of Jewish law, that the desire became strengthened. I do not know. I do know, though, that I started nursery at the age of two, because I was too much for my mother to handle. I should add that my mother did not work and that we always had a cleaning girl in the mornings and a girl who cared for me, and later on for my brother, in the afternoons, while my mother would go to the café houses with her friends, as was customary at that time. In other words, we had a very comfortable life.

I remember my father telling me how fortunate I was to be born in the City of Jerusalem, as it was of great importance to all the three great religions of the world: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. I should say that other than Judaism, I was then most familiar with the Moslem religion since at the time many Arabs still lived in Jerusalem, which was then actually a part of Palestine. I remember the Arabs’ call to prayer at various times during the day, and have seen many of their mosques, as at that time we had access to the Old City of Jerusalem, which has been recently acquired by Israel.

The first real recollection of Christianity I have is my father telling me that if I did not behave properly, he would send me to the French Alliance Christian School, where I would be well educated in manners. The only other recollection I have is when I sprained my ankle, jumping down seven steps, trying to win in a competition against my friends, my father took me to a hospital in Jerusalem, where a blind nun treated my ankle with some therapy. On occasion, we would see the nuns and priests from the few churches in Israel, and we would stare at them, as they seemed to be a rarity. I also wondered why they had to make such a big display of their crosses since they knew that they were Christians and they knew it was offensive to us.

I should explain that unlike Jewish people in either Europe of America, the Israeli Jews have always been members of the majority religion, so I did not come from a background of fear or persecution. To the contrary, the other religions were in the minority and I could not understand why they had to be so different. It also should be noted that in Israel, religious education is part of the curriculum, and as in the United States, American History is taught many times, first in story forms, then is more detail as were progressed through the grades.

In the first two or three grades, the Bible is taught in a simplified story form. In the fourth grade, we studied the Bible from the beginning, with all the different commentaries and interpretations of it by the Jewish scholars through the ages. I loved the subject, as at that time I was very religious and when we went to the synagogue, I would pray with real sincerity.

I should also add that Christianity was always put down in my home. Actually, this is a tremendous understatement. We just never recognized any other religion than Judaism.


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